The Adam Lambert flap: When hypocrisy rhymes with ABC

War in Afghanistan…More Americans on foodstamps than ever before…Goldman Sachs fat cats bursting their buttons at the expense of the middle class (what’s left of it) and now

Adam Lambert falling through the corporate shredder.

At first, these things may seem completely unrelated. But they’re not. Despite America’s inherent good qualities, a traveler from a foreign land could be forgiven for thinking we are a dollar-worshipping, shamelessly consumerist, Puritan lot, hell-bent on ruling the world and then making light of our follies on Saturday Night Live.

Certainly, we are a country where freedom of speech, though enshrined in the Constitution, is not universally adored. This is particularly true where “corporate America” is concerned — where incursions on expression are often whitewashed in a politically correct neo-Yankee Newspeak. I know this isn’t Paris in the ’20s, but golly this is getting boring.

Apparently the execs at ABC circulated a company statement which read in part, “Given the live nature of the American Music Awards, Adam Lambert’s performance, which differed greatly from his rehearsal, caught many, including the network, off guard.”

So a live performance differs somewhat from a rehearsal:
Ooh la la! What an outrage! Strap a scarlet letter (make it an “O” for Original), on the guy (oh, who just happens to be gay), and posthaste!

Say what you will about the song, the voice, or the persona, the performance was rather spectacularly subversive and, note to ABC, this isn’t Saudia Arabia. You want your performers to be robots? Even R2D2 spoke his mind — and wouldn’t you rather be entertained by him/it than some corporate android, or a corporate-cannibalized pseudo-songstress like Britney “allow me to French kiss Madonna on national television” Spears?

Fast forward to two questions I put to ABC spokesperson Patrick Preblick about the whole Adam Lambert dust-up:

1) Does the network’s decision to “not move forward” with Lambert’s appearances signify that at least one of these appearances was already hard scheduled?

Answer: “Yes, Kimmel was already booked.”

2) What is the specific reason for not moving forward with booking Lambert on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and ABC’s New Year’s Eve special?

Answer: “We have no further comment.”

It’s a good thing, as Thomas Jefferson said, that every man has two countries: his own and France.


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